October 6, 2008 - September 29, 2008
Monday, October 06, 2008
The True Romance of a Power Couple
With the world eagerly awaiting "W
Oliver Stone's movie treatment of George and Laura Bush et al, it's
probably not too early to start anticipating a docudrama about our next
First Couple. These things
take time to plan, fund, and produce, you know. So we thought we'd help
out with a few development suggestions for the movie we're pretty sure
should be called "O."
There's no question that it should be another Oliver Stone production.
He has a real talent for a creative approach to historical subjects
But it will have to differ in scope from "W," which is timed to
coincide with the end of the Bush administration and the election of a
replacement president. "O" needs to be released in October 2012 when
Obama is seeking his second term, which means that it will have to be
devoted less than half to the first term and more than half to the
incredible story of how Barack and Michelle -- against all odds --
stormed the gates of power to achieve domain over their racist nation.
That's why we're proposing that the first act of the screenplay should
be drawn from the book about Michelle excerpted today in the Washington Post
, which contains
the most detailed account yet of the incredible love story between
Michelle and Barack. That's also why we're convinced it's time
for a reunion
between Stone and Quentin Tarantino. Consider the following passage
from the WAPO
describes Michelle's ordeal at the first law firm she worked for after
law school graduation. Unbelievably for such a talented social
revolutionary, the firm plopped her into an assigment in its marketing
department, where some of the brightest legal talent in the world was
put to work fine-tuning advertising copy for corporate and public
At big firms, much of the work that
falls to young associates involves detail and tedium. There were all
sorts of arcane but important rules about what could and could not be
said or done in product advertisements, and in the marketing group, all
the associates, not just the new ones, reviewed scripts for TV
commercials to make sure they conformed. As far as associate work goes,
it could have been worse — "Advertising is a little sexier than
spending a full year reading depositions in an antitrust law suit or
reviewing documents for a big merger," says White — but it was
monotonous and relatively low-level.
Too monotonous for Michelle, who, White says, complained that the work
he gave her was unsatisfactory. He says he gave her the Coors beer ads,
which he considered one of the more glamorous assignments they had.
Even then, he says, "she at one point went over my head and complained
[to human resources] that I wasn't giving her enough interesting stuff,
and the person came down to my office and said, 'Basically she's
complaining that she's being treated like she's a second-year
associate,' and we agreed that she was a second-year associate. I had
eight or nine other associates, and I couldn't start treating one of
them a lot better."
White says he talked to Michelle about her expectations, but the
problem could not be resolved because the work was what it was. He is
not sure any work he had would have satisfied her. "I couldn't give her
something that would meet her sense of ambition to change the world."
Yes, it's a revolting and ludicrous misuse of world-saving vision, but
rendering it dramatically is going to involve mostly a lot of talking.
Only Quentin Tarantino has the chops to make all that talking a
violent, bleeding edge kind of cinematic experience. What we're going
to need is the crackling suspense of ten-to-fifteen minute stretches of
unbroken dialogue that we can just feel
are going to result in at least metaphorical acts of savagery against
the stultifying status quo. We, the audience, have to feel in our bones
the building power of
Michelle and Barack coming together like Uma and John in Pulp Fiction
for a breakthrough dance
of self-actualization that will make the rest of the world tremble in
terror and erotic surrender. You know. The Tarantino touch. Like when
Uma cut off the top of Lucy Lius's head in Kill Bill.
Not exactly like
that, mind, since we're talking community organizing and political
fundraising here, not Japanese samurai swords and mass murder, but something
like, anyway. It's got to
be world-changing even if nothing really happens for the first hour or
You can see that the casting will be critical. We know the picture up
top suggests that the lead roles might be played by Whoopi Goldberg
, but this is the movies and it has to be much much better
than that. We have some suggestions. There's only one good choice for
the part of Michelle:
Vanessa Williams of "Ugly Betty" fame
would rock as a kick-ass First Lady.
And forget Urkel. There's only one man with the cool and the ears to
play Barack the Stud.
Come to think of it, a pair of
diamond earrings would look good on the Pres.
During the pre-presidential romance part of the picture, casting of supporting roles is
still important, but as long as we have the requisite corporate-looking
types playing all the old white men who get in the Obamas' way, it
doesn't much matter who plays who as long as some of them are played by Robert Duvall
, Rip Torn
, Brian Cox
in), and Donald
(2:35 in). You know. The standard old evil capitalist pigs.
But the part of Jeremiah Wright is key. We have to be able to see that
he is just so darn wacky no one would ever have taken him seriously
except for all the devoted parishioners who made him a
multi-millionaire. Which means, obviously, that it has to be Samuel L. Jackson
You just gotta love his sense of pure
And maybe Bill Ayers should make a token appearance too, just to show
everyone that nobody ever took him seriously, either, because he was
more like a character out of Stakeout
in) than any kind of nasty radical terrorist threat.
Isn't he really kind of adorable and
cute and harmless if not actually sweet?
That's not to say, though, that there aren't real
villains. When the
presidential campaign begins, in the second act, we meet the first true
incarnations of pure evil. These are roles that will require a marquee
Gene Hackman as Bill Clinton. And
Gene Hackman as Hillary Clinton.
And then there's the super-villain of Act II. It's not even clear that
John McCain is completely human. It's like he might be an evil cyborg
God. Just look at him. You'd think
he'd been tortured or something. Yuk.
Predictably, the scary old war dragon picks a rabid fox for his VP candidate
(another Tarantino moment) and if it wasn't for Uncle Joe Biden's white
guy gravitas, the whole revolution could have been sunk.
Happily, everybody in America thinks
Bruce Dern is far sexier than Tina Fey.
All of which leads to the greatest new presidential administration in
history. But victories bring sadness as well as joy to the
manifestly enlightened ones. On their night of all nights -- in the
movie anyway -- the Obamas will be sorrowful about the plight of the
miserable Bush administration Oreos who failed to endorse them when
they had the chance. (This is going to be a boffo scene, full of angst
George Clooney as Colin Powell and
Stockard Channing as Condoleeza Rice.
The third act will be one of the greatest in all of filmic history,
though. The Obama administration's brilliant new attorney general will
put all the evil Republicans, including the Bushes, in prison for life.
Holder as played by Blair Underwood.
The new Treasury Secretary will also prove to be more like some gift
from heaven than an ordinary bureaucrat. He'll heal the entire global
economy with a bunch of new laws that will bury Adam
Best of all, the troops will be coming home from Iraq. Thanks to the
miraculously effective offices of Secretary of Defense Cynthia McKinney.
Secretary of Defense McKinney
as played by Halle Berry.
We're not saying the scriptwriting is going to be easy. We're just
saying it can
be done in
plenty of time to usher in a great second term for the Obamessiah.
Maybe some CGI would help.
Oh. Almost forgot. A picture of the liberal Pope who blessed this
marriage and this divine right of rule.
Martin Sheen as Teddy Kennedy
There. That's better.
Look for it. Fall 2012 premiere. We can't wait.